Role of Healthcare Chaplains in Facilitating Advance Care Planning

This project is closed.

Professional board-certified chaplains are master’s degree-prepared, spiritual-care specialists with supervised clinical training in chaplaincy, and they serve patients, family and friend caregivers, and other health care professionals. Chaplains have training and skills and play key roles in facilitating advance care planning (ACP) conversations with culturally diverse patients and families. However, we have very little empirical data available documenting the roles, responsibilities and competency of chaplains in ACP in the U.S.

This study aims to describe ACP practices among board-certified healthcare chaplains and identify a set of domains of chaplain competencies for ACP in order to inform policy and practice discussions on the role and standards for high quality ACP facilitated by chaplains. We are working with three national chaplaincy organizations to recruit participants for our online survey. This is one of the first, large national surveys of healthcare chaplains on this topic in the U.S.


Minimum requirements include:

(1) Having taken at least one course either on research methods, or statistics
(2) Critical thinking skills and a willingness and ability to learn
(3) Attention to detail
(4) Have taken a statistics course and is comfortable learning new statistical software
(5) History of academic success, preference given to GPA>3.5
(6) Commit to 10 hours week for at least 1 semester

Project Timeline

This project started in Spring of 2020 will continue until end of 2020. Currently, we are recruiting participants for the survey.


Responsibilities may include: review of literature, scheduling participant interviews, participant assessment, data entry, quantitative data analysis and assistance with report writing.

Typical Time Commitment
10 hours / week
Desired Length of Commitment
Summer or Fall Semester


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